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10 Facts about solar energy you might not have known before!

We’ve put together 10 important facts about solar energy which may surprise you, including some supporting comments from real solar PV system owners, news articles and research!

Solar panel close up

1. A solar PV system has no moving parts and therefore requires very little to no maintenance!

Being low-maintenance is one of the great reasons that make solar PV a great investment. The only thing you may need to do is give your panels a clean once a year to remove any debris, dirt or whatever else that hasn’t washed away with the rain.

We often get asked about maintenance packages for solar PV systems, we’ve actually got a full blog on this topic – click here to take a look. To summarise the blog, you shouldn’t need a maintenance package for your PV system if you have individual panel monitoring as you will be able to clearly identify any faults or shading problems.

The sun, good for us, great for energy!

2. Solar energy is completely safe to produce!

A Solar Plants solar PV system presents very little, if any, risks to your home. Here at Solar Plants, we install SolarEdge solar panel systems which have SafeDC shutdown technology, reducing the voltage in the DC cables to a safe extra-low voltage when required, ensuring the safety of everybody in your home.

We understand that safety is of paramount importance to our customers so if you’d like to ask any questions about this point, feel free to chat to our friendly team of Energy Advisers on Live Chat – they will be happy to help!

3. Solar energy is being recognised as the future of alternative energy sources!

The Office of National Statistics shows that over the past 15 years, since Facebook was launched back in 2003, energy prices have increased by 280% and wholesale prices have increased by 50% in the past 12 months alone. Solar PV provides a reliable energy source for the future of your home and reduces energy bills by up to 70%!

Solar Plants customer, Jeff, tweeted us recently to say, “My investment into solar energy is long term as electricity prices will keep rising and with the introduction of electric cars, the present grid infrastructure will need serious investment which will mean higher bills”.

4. Solar energy produces no carbon emissions

Many people are becoming more climate-conscious as the media often publishes thought-provoking stories of the devastating impact climate change is having on our planet. Solar is a completely clean, renewable energy source, something that many people are deciding to take responsibility for.

We recently ran a Green Week campaign with a week of blogs, news and infographics with suggestions of different ways that you can lower your carbon emissions! Click here to take a look at the different blogs.

5. Solar PV works all year round – even in winter!

It’s a misconception that solar panels only work when it’s sunny. In fact, panels are powered by ambient daylight. A line that we use at a lot of our exhibitions is, ‘If you can see your hand in front of your face outside, your panels are producing energy!’

Solar Plants customer, Caroline, emailed in to tell us that her estimated energy usage had dropped by 57% last winter, a huge saving on those expensive electricity bills. With intelligent battery storage technology, you can also store excess energy for evening use and those long winter evenings.

6. Solar is an abundant energy source

The sun is the most abundant source of energy available on Earth. The sunlight that the Earth gets for just an hour is enough to generate energy for one year for the whole world!

We love this video from Greenpeace, showing how much space would need to be covered by solar panels to power every home in the UK – it may well surprise you! Click here

Charge your electric vehicle for free with solar PV

7. Solar energy is more useful than ever before

With the latest industry advancements such as Time-Of Use tariffs, allowing you to top up your battery overnight with cheap energy, and Grid Trading giving you the opportunity to sell your energy which will be credited to you against your energy bills, battery storage has become a sophisticated, intelligent essential part of your home energy system making solar PV more useful than ever before. As EVs continue to surge in popularity, you can also use generated solar energy to contribute to the running cost of an EV.

We have a great blog over on our website which discusses how solar PV, battery storage, time-of-use tariffs, smart charging and EVs work together.

An in-roof installation in the UK

8. Solar PV is available in a variety of installation methods

The traditional method for instaling solar PV is the use of brackets and rails so panels can sit on top of a roof. This is still the most widely used installation, especially now that aesthetically solar panels are better looking, now mainly black rather than blue and silver.

There is also the option to have panels integrated into your roof, a cost-effective solution, ensuring the modules do not detract from the look and feel of your home. For anyone completing a re-roof or building a new home, there is the option of solar tiles, also known as solar tiles or solar shingles, promoted by brands like Tesla who have already launched their solar tile in the US.

Thin film solar is also popular if you are thinking of installing solar onto a standing seam roof. You can also have a full edge-to-edge solar roof or have the panels ground mounted in nearby land… the possibilities really are endless!

The solar tiles that we use are manufactured just up the road, in Carmarthen!

Adding solar power to your home increases your chances of selling your home

9. A solar PV system will increase the value of your home!

A future-proofed property with cheaper energy bills and a regular income are an attractive proposition for any potential buyer and the value of your home will increase with a solar PV installation.

A recent GoCompare survey about ‘must have property features’ found that for many buyers, the on-going costs of running a home – paying the mortgage, utility bills and council tax – are a real concern. The report also included that 50% of people said that energy efficiency rating was a ‘must have’.

Join the energy revolution, with grid trading from Social Energy!

10. The Feed-In Tariff might have gone, but that’s not the end for solar incentives!

The UK Government is planning to introduce a mandatory supplier-led route to market for small-scale low-carbon generation. Energy suppliers would be liable, under new legislation, to pay solar PV owners for any energy they export back to the grid. The new scheme is likely to roll out in 2020!

We also recently partnered with Social Energy (SE) which means that with a battery storage and solar PV system, you can trade energy with others using the software and sell your spare valuable energy to the grid when demand is high.

Lewys Phillips

Lewys Phillips

Communications Officer

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